Seven Wisconsin men indicted for meth distribution

Gregory J. Haanstad announced that on July 18, a federal grand jury returned an eight-count indictment against 33-year-old Levester R. Brown of Milwaukee, 37-year-old Christopher L. Maccani of Green Bay, 25-year-old Jimmy L. Desotell of Green Bay, 35-year-old Christopher A. Champine of Green Bay, 39-year-old Umero V. Saldana, Jr. of Green Bay, 33-year-old Ryan L. Pieper of De Pere, and 34-year-old Joshua D. Sepulveda of Denmark. The indictment alleges that Brown, Maccani, Desotell, Champine, Saldana Jr., and Pieper were involved in a conspiracy to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine and, further, charging Maccani, Desotell, Champine, and Saldana Jr. with possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

Champine and Sepulveda are also charged with kidnapping. It is alleged that Champine and Sepulveda “did unlawfully and willfully seize, confine, inveigle, kidnap, abduct, and hold for retaliation” an unnamed individual. The indictment further charges Champine and Sepulveda with brandishing a firearm during the kidnapping.

Brown and Pieper face a mandatory 10-year prison sentence up to lifetime of imprisonment, a $10 million fine, and between 5 years and a lifetime of supervised release. Maccani, Desotell, and Saldana Jr. face a mandatory 15 years of imprisonment up to a lifetime of imprisonment, over $10 million in fines, and between 5 years and a lifetime on supervision. Sepulveda faces a mandatory 7 years imprisonment up to a lifetime of imprisonment, a $250,000 fine, and up to 5 years on supervised release. Finally, if convicted on all counts, Champine faces a mandatory 42 years imprisonment up to a lifetime of imprisonment, over $10 million in fines, and between 5 years and a lifetime on supervised release.

The case was investigated by the Brown County Drug Task Force, the North Central High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Task Force, the Phoenix, AZ, branch of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, the Scottsdale Police Department, and the Phoenix and Green Bay Divisions of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Daniel R. Humble.

An indictment is only a charge and not evidence of guilt. The defendants are presumed innocent and are entitled to a fair trial at which the government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

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